Rock Block is our original patch of Tempranillo, full of the limestone and volcanic rhyolite typical of the vineyard. Pretty and lifted jubey blueberry and plum fruit without sightly lower than usual intensity of florals and eucalypt. Rich and plush on the palate, with good grip and structure, this is a spectacular Rock Block.
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Vibrant and intense purple from core to rim. Crimson plums, violets, cinnamon and pencil shavings. Medium to full-bodied with intense dark fruit on attack then morphs into a melange of spices and mountain herbs. Acidity provides a delicious vibrancy through the mid-palate and then hands off to fine-grained tannins to carry the finish very long and dry. A serious example of the variety. 94 points (Stuart Knox)
Always the most herbal of the 3 single-site tempranillos, with its dried sage and eucalypt notes, but there’s enough savouriness and dark fruits for it to blend in, more like a seasoning. Chiselled tannins have poise and are in unison with the bright acidity. 93 points (Jane Faulkner)
One of three single-site bottlings of Tempranillo, selected for their distinctive character from within our 9.3Ha vineyard. Rock Block (0.363Ha, 670-680m elevation) is our original patch of tempranillo, planted in 2000 mainly to clone D8V12 with small amounts of requena, tinta roriz, D8V13 and CL770. The short east-facing rows span a reef of rhyolite, with limestone intermixed; it is among the rockiest patches in our vineyard, but has well-structured red clay-loam soil allowing good root penetration. The stand of yellow box trees below one corner of the block causes some devigoration, and contributes eucalypt-derived aromatics to the wine; it is always the most fragrant parcel.
This year we celebrate our 30th vintage. Just like last year, the 2018-2019 was the second-warmest season on record behind 2016, this time with some very hot summer weather. A very dry winter saw us applying irrigation prior to budburst for the first time. January was particularly hot, and irrigation was used to prevent heat damage. Subsequent weather during ripening and vintage was good. Yields were down in most varieties, but quality was good, and once again, the later ripening varieties benefitted from the milder conditions, showing great colour and flavour definition.
Hand picked 26 March 2019, at 14 Baumé. Had 5 days pre-ferment maceration, then wild-fermented in an open vat with hand plunging. Pressed to French oak (mainly one year old) after 6 days post-ferment maceration. Unfined and lightly filtered. Bottled under screwcap January 2020; 24 dozen made. Alcohol 14.5% by volume. Vegan friendly?: Yes.
Drink now to 2039.